CONCORDIA, Kan. – Ashley Gibson scored 31 points to help the Butler women defeat Cloud County 65-46 on Wednesday.
Gibson hit 14-of-20 from the field and added six rebounds and four steals in the win for Butler (15-4 overall, 5-1 Jayhawk West). Katie Palmer finished with 13 points, six assists and four steals, while Sarah Parker added nine points and nine rebounds.
The 31 points scored by Gibson is her second-best scoring output and the 14 made field goals are an individual career best. Gibson scored 37 back on Nov. 15 in a road win at Seminole State (Okla.).
The Grizzlies never trailed in the contest, jumping out to a 13-2 lead over Cloud. Gibson scored two baskets, while Palmer added a field goal and a three-pointer during the run.
During a five-minute stretch late in the first half, Gibson scored 10 of Butler's 11 points during a 11-2 run. She hit two foul shots at the 4:30 mark to give the Grizzlies a 33-14 lead.
Butler went into halftime leading 35-21, but Gibson was just heating up. The sophomore scored the Grizzlies' first 14 points of the half. Palmer then added a three-pointer to put Butler on top 53-26 with 10:40 remaining. Butler's 27-point lead was the largest of the contest.
Butler shot 45 percent (27-of-60) from the field while limiting Cloud to just 25 percent (15-of-59).
The Grizzlies have now won five straight contests and are one game behind Hutchinson and Seward County, who sit atop the Jayhawk West standings in a two-way tie. Butler will host Seward (17-1 overall, 5-0 conference) on Saturday. The Saints are ranked ninth in the nation. Tipoff from the Power Plant is at 2 p.m.